Global Tech Roundup: Netflix fires 3 senior executives, clubhouse introduces DMs and others

With Huge Investments for African Originals, are Netflix and Showmax Taking Too Big a Risk?

Hi guys, welcome to the end of another week in July and like the popular saying goes “Thank God it’s Friday”. The week has been filled with exciting stories like top executives getting kicked out because of ‘gossips’ to clubhouse now letting you slide into the DM.

Here are some Major interesting stories we have specially curated for you.

Netflix fires 3 Senior Executives for secretly complaining about Company’s Leadership

Netflix has fired 3 senior executives who were discovered using their private Slack platforms to complain about the company’s leadership.

Netflix Earns Record $1.7bn Profit but Africa Only Posts 0.32% of Global Revenue in Q1 2021

Not only were their displeasure directed at the VP of Original Films Marketing, Jonathan Helfgot, it also targeted Netflix Chief Marketing Officer, Bozoma Saint John.

According to The Hollywood Report (THR), Saint John is regarded as a rising star of the company with connections to the Obamas and Fashion Icon, Anna Wintour. She is also seen as role model for women of color who have always been underrepresented especially at executive level of major companies.

While Helfgot himself was reluctant to fire them due to their capabilities as the senior executives were responsible for around half of Netflix’s staff, he later gave in to pressure from more senior leadership to see them gone.

Clubhouse launches its DM feature, Backchannel

It goes down in the DM. Yes, Clubhouse is launching its direct messaging feature called ‘Backchannel’ which allows you to slide into people’s clubhouse DMs.


Backchannel is available to all iOS and Android users but the feature is restricted to one-on-one chats, group chats and link sharing for now. Others like Images and videos cannot be shared at the moment.

Clubhouse claims that the functionality is to help foster better relationships amongst users and also help moderators connect after an event.

We can’t say we didn’t see this coming as their competitors like Twitter Spaces and Facebook Live Audio Rooms allow users to text chat while participating in audio conversations.

Facebook Messenger introduces ‘Soundmojis’

Emojis add vibrancy and colour to messenger chats all over the world and are used to express what can’t be conveyed through chat. It is estimated that every day, over 2.4 billion messages with emojis are sent on messenger.

A smartphone user shows the Facebook newsfeed on his phone.

Which brings us to this question; What if emojis could talk? Well, Facebook just made that possible with Soundmojis.

Soundmojis are next level emojis that are made to make your chats more interactive and vibrant. It lets you send sounds like a drumroll, clapping, laughter and even short audio clips from your favourite artists or movies.

There are about 27 Soundmojis for now but we expect this number to increase in the future.

Twitter adds captions to voice tweets more than a year after it was launched

When Twitter launched voice tweets back in June, 2020, it was met with a lot of criticisms. This was due to not having captions because there was a lack of dedicated team in the accessibility department.

twitter - spaces
twitter – spaces

Finally, Twitter is now rolling out captions for voice tweets. Captions will be automatically generated in supported languages which are English, Japanese, Spanish, Portuguese, Arabic, Turkish, Hindi, French, Indonesian, Korean, and Italian.

To see the captions, click on the CC icon in the top-right corner of the voice tweet window.

As part of our ongoing work to make Twitter accessible to everyone, we’re rolling out automated captions for voice tweets to iOS” said Gurpreet kaur, Twitters head of global accessibility”

He also mentioned that while it might not be perfect for now, it’s one of the many steps that is being taken to strengthen accessibility and create a truly inclusive service.

18-year-old Blue Origin passenger to become youngest person ever in space

Dutch Teenager, Oliver Daemen will become the youngest person ever in space after he was picked for the trip by Blue Origin, Jeff Bezos’s rocket company.

Oliver Daemen

He will be joining the Amazon founder himself, his brother, Mark Bezos, and pilot Wally Funk when they launch into space aboard the New Shepard rocket on July 20.

The Federal Aviation Administration approved the launched just a day after British Billionaire, Richard Branson flew to the edge of space aboard a rocket-powered vehicle developed by his own company, Virgin Galactic.

Daemen was able to secure a spot after the original auction winner at $28 million decided to postpone and chose a later mission.

“We thank the auction winner for their generous support of club for the future and are honored to welcome Oliver to fly with us on New Shepard” says Blue Origin CEO, Bob smith

Daemen’s auction was paid for by his dad, Joes Daemen, who is CEO of Somerset Capital Partners. The price was not disclosed.

This is all we have for you this week. Make sure to catch up with next week’s update.

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